Shares of online travel booking company TripAdvisor (TRIP) have been in a downward spiral ever since it reported weaker than expected fourth-quarter earnings on Tuesday. Though total revenues increased year-on-year and came in above the estimates, the hotel segment fell short of expectations.
Adjusted earnings surged to $0.27 per share in the fourth quarter from $0.06 per share in the year-ago period, but missed estimates. On an unadjusted basis, the company recorded profit of $7 million or $0.05 per share, compared to a loss of $84 million or $0.60 per share in the fourth quarter of 2017 when profitability was negatively impacted by higher tax expenses. In the most recent quarter, the bottom-line benefited from higher revenues and improved cost management.
Revenues moved up 8% to $346 million in the December quarter from $321 million a year earlier as a 2% drop in hotel revenues was more than offset by a 38% growth in non-hotel revenues. Though the top-line exceeded forecasts, growth was limited by unfavorable changes in foreign currency.
In the fourth quarter, the bottom-line benefited from higher revenues and improved cost management
There was a 2% rise in the average number of monthly unique visitors on TripAdvisor-branded websites. During the three-month period, total applications rose 2% to 490.
The management is forecasting double-digit growth in consolidated adjusted EBITDA for fiscal 2019, supported by a projected improvement in the performance of the hotel segment. Also, the ongoing initiatives to ramp up the Experiences and Restaurants segment through heavy investment are expected to drive long-term revenue growth.
“Our solid Q4 capped a very strong 2018. We reinvigorated Hotel segment profitability, reinforced our leading positions in Experiences and Restaurants and laid important groundwork for future growth,” said CEO Steve Kaufer.
After falling sharply during the extended trading session Tuesday, TripAdvisor shares continued the downtrend on Wednesday, losing about 6% in the early trading hours. The stock has gained more than 30% since the beginning of the year.
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